Change BAEC award booking on Cathay?

Old Aug 14, 16, 2:06 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: HKG
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Change BAEC award booking on Cathay?

Hi all,

I recently managed to get an award booking in First from HK back to the UK. I noticed that not only was BA First available but also Cathay first class, so I selected that and felt very pleased with myself! However my circumstances have changed (sadly due to illness in the family) so I need to change my flight to an earlier date, in order to spend longer in the UK.

No problem, I thought, looks like there's award availability (again in First, both BA and Cathay) for a week earlier, I'll just use the "change my booking" feature on the website and move it to a week earlier. Unfortunately that just gives me an error message when I try to do it. I called BAEC and after an amazingly short hold (only a minute or so) I got through to someone who was very helpful - except that she told me there is no availability on that date or indeed any day at all for the entire two weeks prior to my existing booking (regardless of what the website says).

I guess my options here are (a) cancel my booking and just pay for a flight (which is a perfectly acceptable option but sadly won't be in Cathay First!) or (b) wait and hope that something comes up, with the possible outcome that I will have to stick to my original date, which is not ideal. Also (c) which is that I cancel the existing flight, wait to get my miles back, and try to book an earlier reward flight if there is still availability. I'm leaning toward (a) but I was wondering whether anyone knows how long the miles will take to credit to my account and whether (c) is even feasible?

Also, is it normal that there's reward availability but no option to change a flight like this? I know it's on a different airline but it would seem reasonable to me that if there's availability then it would benefit them to allow me to change, with a fee.

Thanks in advance...
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Old Aug 14, 16, 2:19 am
  #2  
nux
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Join Date: Jun 2012
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If you definately won't travel on the date booked, cancel online and you should have the avios redeposited immediately. Then rebook for the earlier date if possible.

There can be issues with BA.com showing phantom CX award availability, but if you see BA award availability then that at least should be correct.
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Old Aug 14, 16, 2:22 am
  #3  
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Thanks!
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Old Aug 14, 16, 2:48 am
  #4  
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Cancelled and (not so) patiently waiting for it to actually take effect. There seems to be some availability on the dates I need.
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Old Aug 14, 16, 3:56 am
  #5  
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You were right that the Avios "should" be refunded immediately - I had to call customer services (again they answered immediately - I never got this good service when I was a GCH!) and they said that "the system sometimes gets confused" and they then proceeded to refund me manually. All done and I've booked another Cathay First flight for next week instead.

Thanks for your advice! Spot on!
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